Massa

Malaysian Grand Prix

182 posts in this topic

It's true that disobeying your team is a bad thing to do as a driver. It's also true that a driver who disobeys their team can be dealt with as their team sees fit, and it's pointless to speculate on what that might be or think our opinion as fans actually counts for anything in that regard.

I said before that I don't think this was a good example of Vettel lacking good sporting ethics. That's because Vettel disobeying a team order is a contractual issue between him and his team, rather than a sporting issue in this case (since Vettel did not, for example, break any FIA rules)*. The most convincing argument I've heard against this point of view is the "they were not on equal footing, Webber had turned his engine down, so it was unfair" argument.

I think that argument is superficially convincing but quickly becomes weak when you think about. Let's assume that Vettel did not turn his down too (Horner wouldn't confirm this but it's a safe bet, right?). First of all, it ignores the fact that Webber knew that Vettel was attacking him, and that Vettel had passed him, and at any point could have turned his engine back up, either prior to being passed or after he was passed.

Secondly, it assumes that Vettel's advantage came from the engine, in reality we don't know how much of it did come from different engine settings, but we certainly know that there are big differences between the two alternate tyre compounds they were on at that stage and that Vettel seemed much quicker. We can also assume that Webber would push as much as he felt he could to try and win, once he knew he was openly racing Vettel. The result we got was the faster driver, on better tyres, won the race, as if the team had not intervened at all. That sounds like a good definition of "fair" to me but I'd be willing to hear how it isn't fair.

Thirdly, and more broadly, it ignores the fact that such a thing as an "equal footing" does not exist in life and definitely not in F1 in general. If you want to see races where everyone is on an equal footing F1 is definitely not the series for you, with all the various intra team politicking with characters like Helmut Marko, different tyre strategies, different drivers getting different updates at different stages, contractual clauses about being the number 1, etc etc ad infinitum. So it's fair enough to say they weren't on an equal footing, that much is true, but I don't think it was so uniquely unequal to be considered unsporting (which by the way, we have seen many times in the past and I won't bother to bring these examples but everybody knows them).

I am sure that disobeying an instruction from an employer in F1 could be unethical from a sporting pov in some situations, though I think they are quite hard to come up with. Strangely, it seems a lot easier to me to think of examples where following a team instruction would violate sporting ethics, e.g. racing a car that you know is using an illegal component, or deliberately crashing to cause a safety car.

*Oh, I'd also like to say that had team orders still been "illegal" as per the FIA's regs, would we be holding Vettel up as an example of a driver who disobeyed his team in the interests of true sporting principles? I suspect not but I like the idea of it laugh.png

Ooh, by George I like this, I don't normally disagree with you, but I am going to today. I feel dirty, but I like it :lol:

Ok, in an earlier post I put 'equal' and not equal for a reason, that's because I understand how 'equal' things can be, or not be, I thought that was implied with the ' ' marks - it's the internation symbol for everything might not be as it appears to be, honestly, get up to speed on this George :whistling:

Seriously though, regardless of tyres (although Webber seemed to prefer the hard tyres anyway) or any other strategic elements, it's fair to say that turning your engine down can't be the greatest thing to do if you want to stay in front of a car that's trying to pass you. I say this safe in the knowledge that I have never heard anyone say that turning their engine down helped them keep a place. I lied about being serious, sorry :lol:

You say Webber turning his engine down ignored the fact that Vettel was attacking him, but I presume he had turned his engine down before this (we only have Mark's word on this) and probably had assurances from the team that Vettel was going to stay put. The team didn't know Vettel was going to attack Webber, so I dare say Webber didn't know either. Webber not turning his engine back up is an interesting one and something that occurred to me. However, it's clear that Seb was quicker at that point, so even with turning his engine back up, I don't think Webber would have caught him, but I don't really think that's the argument here. How much credence we place on Webber's statements like 'we are only racing at eight tenths', etc will be down to individuals, but it is fair to say that earlier in the race when Seb complained about Webber being slow, Webber put a spurt on and pulled out about 3s over Seb, I believe. I think Webber was on the hard tyre and Seb on the medium tyres in that stint too, so it is entirely possible that Webber was racing within limitations.

Did Webber race as hard as he could to keep his place? I am not convinced on that one, as I believe there was a point where he could have put Seb off the track and didn't do so. I think it's fair to say that some other drivers would have done.

I am not getting into the rights and wrongs of who attacked who first, etc. I will say, though, that I don't think it stems from Sliverstone 2011 or Brazil last year, I think this pretty much goes back to Turkey 2010. Well, it may have been Turkey 2010, or it could have been Monaco in 1998 for all the good my memory is. Whatever the first race they hit each other as team mates was.

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I think it's arguable whether this has hurt Vettel or helped him, which is the same as deciding whether it was a stupid thing to do or not. On the one hand, he can probably get away with it without any serious discipline. On the other, he now has a team mate who doesn't want to play ball whatsoever (I know, Webber never really played ball, but now he'll be even worse). If I were him I'd probably be slightly concerned that next time I tried to pass Webber he's just going to put me in the gravel. These guys are professionals and they wouldn't do that, you say? Senna and Prost, I say. So in one sense Vettel's unprofessional act could have some bad results for his championship in the future, on the other, it has certainly helped him considerably in the championship in comparison to his main rivals, Kimi and Alonso, in the present. So I can understand it. I think if he'd really been thinking, though, he might have found the former view a bit more logical in the long term.

Well, I have only had time today to watch the race and so can only comment after everybody has already talked themselves silly, but anyway.

Looking at both the RBR and the Mercedes situation you can really tell a lot about the four drivers. Neither webber nor vettel like the other guy. That's fine. The two don't have to be best buds, they just need to finish the race (I was going to say "in one piece" but you never know, one of them might come in second missing a wheel and a front wing after running into the other in the last corner). What Vettel did not really the best thing to do when looking for employment, but Vettel is the type of driver who never has to look for employment. Vettel is the type of guy who says: "I want to drive for you" and the team says: "Right this way". It also shows Vettel's character. He is a 3x WDC. Two of them were won by less or very close to 7 points, the difference between first and second. If this had been the 17th race nothing would be said. People always act like the last races are more important than the first ones, problem with that thinking is that they aren't. A point from Austrailia is worth exactly the same as a point from Brazil. Drivers like Vettel and Schumi and Alonso and any of the really really good drivers know that. So Vettel did what he did because he wants one thins, to win and win and win. And that did he do? He won. And he als sent a very strong message to the other drivers who he will be fighting for the WDC: I will never stop pushing to win, I will push so hard to win that you have no hope of trying to beat me. I will push from the very start of the season and if you haven't started to push you have alrwady lost.

Is that a good trait for a person? Not my call to make, but is it a good trait to have to be a formula one driver that wants to win? Most definately. And to your point Rainmaster about what Webber can really do: I don't think he really has any cards on the table. The problem is he either does not realize it or he does and is not able to accept it. If he were to take matters into his own hands with vettel you can sure as hell bet RBR back Vettel. Who would you rather have on your team, Webber or Vettel? The other problem is that RBR doesn't understand the situation either. Look at Ferrari and the Schumacher days, love them or hate them, Ferrari were brilliant in handeling the situation. When you have a driver of that caliber you need two things from your other driver, 1, they need to be able to drive well, 2, they need to be able to accept their position. Massa, Rubins, Irvine all knew that if the choice came down to them vs Schumi, no person in their right mind would choose them over Schumi. I don;t think webber knows that and I don't think RBR have come to the realization that they need to make that clear/that is how they need to run a team with a Vettel type driver.

Ok, now to Mercedes and Rosberg. I like Rosberg, he is a nice guy and he is really funny and likeable (just like vettel) when they are on German TV in their native language. (This can actually digress into a discusion about how German drivers don't even try to engage most non-german press because of the horrible anti-german rhetoric of the British press that spearheads the F1 media world, but it won't)

The situation showed the difference between someone who has won a WDC and who has not. Vettel was behind his teammate and thought he was faster and being held up, he took charge. Rosberg was in the same boat and did not. Yes rosberg is in a much more vulnerable position in his team vis-a-vis Vettel. If you watch the last ten laps or so, Rosberg was always within one second of Hamilton but never opened his DRS on the back strait, only sometimes on the front strait. If he had wanted Rosberg could have overtaken hamilton. But he didn't. And like someone said before, Hamilton was in the perfect position, like Teflon Alonso (I really like that analogy). If hamilton was overtaken he would be the victim. If he was not, he would 1, have more points, and 2, be able to say "hey, I know rosberg should have been here, blah blah blah". Win win on both counts. (I have to hand it to Hamilton, I didn't think he would be capable of such highlevel though patterns but he proved me wrong).

Now Nico is in good with the team, but what good will that do in Round 15 with Hamilton and Nico fighting for the WDC and Hamilton about to win the race and nico on his heals and hamilton leading Nico with 5 in the points? Nothing, the team will put the their money on Hamilton like they should because he has more points.

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I think this displays more a weakness in RBR management than anything.

They have to assert some control over Vettel, as otherwise things are going to get very messy. Events are inevitable if they go down the messy route:

- No sharing of data between two sides of garage

- Different setups for each driver (with secret components being used)

- Ignoring team orders in future (both drivers)

- Squabbling and bumping on track instead of racing

- Dragging RBR name through mud with media

- Webber getting demotivated/angry and throwing races away

None of which is good for the team. The history of F1 is littered with stuff like this and it invariably ends in tears for all concerned.

I fear though that the damage is done, Mr Horner has not had the Cajones to deal with it and more will follow...

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Ooh, by George I like this, I don't normally disagree with you, but I am going to today. I feel dirty, but I like it laugh.png

Ok, in an earlier post I put 'equal' and not equal for a reason, that's because I understand how 'equal' things can be, or not be, I thought that was implied with the ' ' marks - it's the internation symbol for everything might not be as it appears to be, honestly, get up to speed on this George whistling.gif

Seriously though, regardless of tyres (although Webber seemed to prefer the hard tyres anyway) or any other strategic elements, it's fair to say that turning your engine down can't be the greatest thing to do if you want to stay in front of a car that's trying to pass you. I say this safe in the knowledge that I have never heard anyone say that turning their engine down helped them keep a place. I lied about being serious, sorry laugh.png

You say Webber turning his engine down ignored the fact that Vettel was attacking him, but I presume he had turned his engine down before this (we only have Mark's word on this) and probably had assurances from the team that Vettel was going to stay put. The team didn't know Vettel was going to attack Webber, so I dare say Webber didn't know either. Webber not turning his engine back up is an interesting one and something that occurred to me. However, it's clear that Seb was quicker at that point, so even with turning his engine back up, I don't think Webber would have caught him, but I don't really think that's the argument here. How much credence we place on Webber's statements like 'we are only racing at eight tenths', etc will be down to individuals, but it is fair to say that earlier in the race when Seb complained about Webber being slow, Webber put a spurt on and pulled out about 3s over Seb, I believe. I think Webber was on the hard tyre and Seb on the medium tyres in that stint too, so it is entirely possible that Webber was racing within limitations.

Did Webber race as hard as he could to keep his place? I am not convinced on that one, as I believe there was a point where he could have put Seb off the track and didn't do so. I think it's fair to say that some other drivers would have done.

I am not getting into the rights and wrongs of who attacked who first, etc. I will say, though, that I don't think it stems from Sliverstone 2011 or Brazil last year, I think this pretty much goes back to Turkey 2010. Well, it may have been Turkey 2010, or it could have been Monaco in 1998 for all the good my memory is. Whatever the first race they hit each other as team mates was.

laugh.png

Ahh, well the difference here then is that I think the bolded part is the whole argument!

First of all, let me say what I meant was not that Webber ignored Vettel attacking him. I meant that the argument that Vettel was unsporting rests on whether this was a fair fight, and that that particular argument is about whether Webber was at a disadvantage because of the team order. I don't see any other sporting ethics type of argument to this (which is surprising since so many commentators jumped on Vettel for this one).

Now I have no doubt that Webber turned his engine down, or was not pushing to the absolute limit, and genuinely believed Vettel would not attack him in the last stint. My point would be that it should have immediately been obvious to him that that wasn't the case once Vettel started, you know, attacking him in the last stint! An attack which went on for many corners. I think Webber did race him hard, the pass was right against the pit wall wasn't it. Like you said, the only way he could have raced him harder to keep him behind is by doing an illegal manoeuvre, which is no longer actually racing and there are lots of reasons why Webber wouldn't do that (though like I said in a different post, maybe he would in the future). Just because Webber didn't punt him off the track doesn't mean he was not desperate to keep Vettel behind and win, and doesn't mean he wasn't racing hard.

So he raced him hard for the position and he clearly wanted to win. Did he race him hard to try and re-pass? Or did the previous team order somehow prevent that? No, I don't think the team order prevented it. You could say that the team order was about, say, conserving tyres and fuel and that Webber's car needed to do that and Vettel's didn't. But that would mean Webber's inability to fight back was a result of needing to manage the tyres and fuel, rather than simply because the team told him to slow down. Obviously, having a slower car is a massive disadvantage, but it's a disadvantage that comes about naturally, not because Webber thought Vettel wouldn't attack or because the team told him to select a certain engine mode. So Webber's disadvantage did not stem from anything the team requested, because anything that the team requested Webber to do in the car that was not absolutely necessary, could have been undone once it was clear they were racing.

Now, it's bad luck for Webber (and us as fans) that Vettel's decision to disobey an order came in a race where he didn't have the pace, either because of the car needing some nursing, or a simple lack of pace at that point, to respond to the attack. But as you can see, I don't quite follow the unfair/unsporting part of that.

All of which means, the faster package (Vettel/Red Bull) won. That seems pretty natural to me. Of course, sometimes the fastest package winning leaves a sour taste for fans, if say a driver has done some illegal move or gained from a team tactic which hurts their team mate who was ahead. But Vettel did not break any FIA rule to win. And, if you see the argument above, then he didn't even gain any actual unfair advantage on Webber (or more accurately, if he did gain an advantage, then Webber had plenty of laps to reply and couldn't).

I struggle to see the unsporting part of that. It's ruthless, sure, not that ruthlessness is at all a bad thing in a driver, and it's a big problem for Red Bull's management etc, but I don't see any big sporting crime here. I see it as a deeply selfish, aggressive, probably unprofessional move, and maybe even a stupid one with some unpleasant and easily foreseeable consequences down the line. But I don't think it's comparable from a sporting ethics POV with some of the things Schumi, Senna, Alonso, Hamilton and lots of others have done. The guy has plenty of time for that, though, and definitely has all the wrong (right?) traits :lol:

Well, I have only had time today to watch the race and so can only comment after everybody has already talked themselves silly, but anyway.

Looking at both the RBR and the Mercedes situation you can really tell a lot about the four drivers. Neither webber nor vettel like the other guy. That's fine. The two don't have to be best buds, they just need to finish the race (I was going to say "in one piece" but you never know, one of them might come in second missing a wheel and a front wing after running into the other in the last corner). What Vettel did not really the best thing to do when looking for employment, but Vettel is the type of driver who never has to look for employment. Vettel is the type of guy who says: "I want to drive for you" and the team says: "Right this way". It also shows Vettel's character. He is a 3x WDC. Two of them were won by less or very close to 7 points, the difference between first and second. If this had been the 17th race nothing would be said. People always act like the last races are more important than the first ones, problem with that thinking is that they aren't. A point from Austrailia is worth exactly the same as a point from Brazil. Drivers like Vettel and Schumi and Alonso and any of the really really good drivers know that. So Vettel did what he did because he wants one thins, to win and win and win. And that did he do? He won. And he als sent a very strong message to the other drivers who he will be fighting for the WDC: I will never stop pushing to win, I will push so hard to win that you have no hope of trying to beat me. I will push from the very start of the season and if you haven't started to push you have alrwady lost.

Is that a good trait for a person? Not my call to make, but is it a good trait to have to be a formula one driver that wants to win? Most definately. And to your point Rainmaster about what Webber can really do: I don't think he really has any cards on the table. The problem is he either does not realize it or he does and is not able to accept it. If he were to take matters into his own hands with vettel you can sure as hell bet RBR back Vettel. Who would you rather have on your team, Webber or Vettel? The other problem is that RBR doesn't understand the situation either. Look at Ferrari and the Schumacher days, love them or hate them, Ferrari were brilliant in handeling the situation. When you have a driver of that caliber you need two things from your other driver, 1, they need to be able to drive well, 2, they need to be able to accept their position. Massa, Rubins, Irvine all knew that if the choice came down to them vs Schumi, no person in their right mind would choose them over Schumi. I don;t think webber knows that and I don't think RBR have come to the realization that they need to make that clear/that is how they need to run a team with a Vettel type driver.

Ok, now to Mercedes and Rosberg. I like Rosberg, he is a nice guy and he is really funny and likeable (just like vettel) when they are on German TV in their native language. (This can actually digress into a discusion about how German drivers don't even try to engage most non-german press because of the horrible anti-german rhetoric of the British press that spearheads the F1 media world, but it won't)

The situation showed the difference between someone who has won a WDC and who has not. Vettel was behind his teammate and thought he was faster and being held up, he took charge. Rosberg was in the same boat and did not. Yes rosberg is in a much more vulnerable position in his team vis-a-vis Vettel. If you watch the last ten laps or so, Rosberg was always within one second of Hamilton but never opened his DRS on the back strait, only sometimes on the front strait. If he had wanted Rosberg could have overtaken hamilton. But he didn't. And like someone said before, Hamilton was in the perfect position, like Teflon Alonso (I really like that analogy). If hamilton was overtaken he would be the victim. If he was not, he would 1, have more points, and 2, be able to say "hey, I know rosberg should have been here, blah blah blah". Win win on both counts. (I have to hand it to Hamilton, I didn't think he would be capable of such highlevel though patterns but he proved me wrong).

Now Nico is in good with the team, but what good will that do in Round 15 with Hamilton and Nico fighting for the WDC and Hamilton about to win the race and nico on his heals and hamilton leading Nico with 5 in the points? Nothing, the team will put the their money on Hamilton like they should because he has more points.

Largely agree and I've already posted too much to say where I disagree.

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laugh.png

Ahh, well the difference here then is that I think the bolded part is the whole argument!

First of all, let me say what I meant was not that Webber ignored Vettel attacking him. I meant that the argument that Vettel was unsporting rests on whether this was a fair fight, and that that particular argument is about whether Webber was at a disadvantage because of the team order. I don't see any other sporting ethics type of argument to this (which is surprising since so many commentators jumped on Vettel for this one).

Now I have no doubt that Webber turned his engine down, or was not pushing to the absolute limit, and genuinely believed Vettel would not attack him in the last stint. My point would be that it should have immediately been obvious to him that that wasn't the case once Vettel started, you know, attacking him in the last stint! An attack which went on for many corners. I think Webber did race him hard, the pass was right against the pit wall wasn't it. Like you said, the only way he could have raced him harder to keep him behind is by doing an illegal manoeuvre, which is no longer actually racing and there are lots of reasons why Webber wouldn't do that (though like I said in a different post, maybe he would in the future). Just because Webber didn't punt him off the track doesn't mean he was not desperate to keep Vettel behind and win, and doesn't mean he wasn't racing hard.

So he raced him hard for the position and he clearly wanted to win. Did he race him hard to try and re-pass? Or did the previous team order somehow prevent that? No, I don't think the team order prevented it. You could say that the team order was about, say, conserving tyres and fuel and that Webber's car needed to do that and Vettel's didn't. But that would mean Webber's inability to fight back was a result of needing to manage the tyres and fuel, rather than simply because the team told him to slow down. Obviously, having a slower car is a massive disadvantage, but it's a disadvantage that comes about naturally, not because Webber thought Vettel wouldn't attack or because the team told him to select a certain engine mode. So Webber's disadvantage did not stem from anything the team requested, because anything that the team requested Webber to do in the car that was not absolutely necessary, could have been undone once it was clear they were racing.

Now, it's bad luck for Webber (and us as fans) that Vettel's decision to disobey an order came in a race where he didn't have the pace, either because of the car needing some nursing, or a simple lack of pace at that point, to respond to the attack. But as you can see, I don't quite follow the unfair/unsporting part of that.

All of which means, the faster package (Vettel/Red Bull) won. That seems pretty natural to me. Of course, sometimes the fastest package winning leaves a sour taste for fans, if say a driver has done some illegal move or gained from a team tactic which hurts their team mate who was ahead. But Vettel did not break any FIA rule to win. And, if you see the argument above, then he didn't even gain any actual unfair advantage on Webber (or more accurately, if he did gain an advantage, then Webber had plenty of laps to reply and couldn't).

I struggle to see the unsporting part of that. It's ruthless, sure, not that ruthlessness is at all a bad thing in a driver, and it's a big problem for Red Bull's management etc, but I don't see any big sporting crime here. I see it as a deeply selfish, aggressive, probably unprofessional move, and maybe even a stupid one with some unpleasant and easily foreseeable consequences down the line. But I don't think it's comparable from a sporting ethics POV with some of the things Schumi, Senna, Alonso, Hamilton and lots of others have done. The guy has plenty of time for that, though, and definitely has all the wrong (right?) traits laugh.png

Hmmm, I am not quite certain if we are arguing quite the same point here, but.................

I am not sure I had really considered the sporting aspect of the overtake when I was referring to the drivers being on an 'equal' footing, although I can see where you are coming from. I guess my opinion infers unsporting behaviour on Seb's part, but it wasn't really the angle I was coming from. I wasn't suggesting that Seb only overtook him when he knew Webber's engine was turned down so he is an evil monster (cue evil laugh), purely that if I see team mates battle, unless it's on as 'equal' a footing as it can be, (notice the internationational ' ' there laugh.png) all things considered, then to me it's no different a spectacle than team orders dictating the finishing order. If that makes any sense?

Ok, regarding the actual battle for postion, I am going on the theory that the initial pass by the pit wall was the bit where Webber was taken by surprise. We may differ on that, but it supports my theory, so I am going with it whistling.gif So at turns 2 and 4, I reckon Webber could have been more aggressive. I don't mean actually physically hitting Seb, but by taking the racing line, which he would have been within his rights to do so being in front and by taking advanatage of Seb's aggressiveness (knowing that rather than concede the corner Seb would have more than likely gone off), he could have made life a whole lot more uncomfortable for Seb.

Regarding the whole turning the engine management back up, presumably during the battle for position, I guess you mean? I have no idea how quick they can change it, I would have thought it would be reasonably quick to change, but it's just a guess. As to whether you would think to change it during 4 corners of a surprise battle, I am not too sure on that one. Would you think to change it after the incident and chase Seb down? Maybe he did and was still not able to catch him, I don't know.

I still maintain that Seb being quicker at that part of the race was not the argument, though. Mark was quicker until the last pit stop. That's when the cut off point for racing was agreed prior to the race, or at least I think it would be and RBR pretty much confirmed that. As a driver you then know that you have to beat your team mate to postion by the last pit stop. Anything after that doesn't matter because there is no race per se as per your pre-race agreement. We have no idea how much quicker Webber could have gone earlier in the race (or indeed Seb) had he not been driving to team orders, as it seems he was, due to the team being unsure of tyre wear. Again, I only have Webber's word for that, but it seems a fairly likely scenario in today's F1 and it's certainly not unheard of. So, as far as I can see, the whole strategy would then be tailored to beating the other teams and beating your team mate by the last pit stop and then hoping that no other team can challenge you. During the race they would have known they had the measure of the Mercs and so for Webber, all he had to do was be in front of Seb by the last pit stop. Or not, in this case..........laugh.png

Edited by pabloh20

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and they owe him the championships...RBR will simply fade if Vettel's not there...

Nonsense. Any one of five or six drivers could have delivered WDCs for RBR. It's not the point. Of course, Webber isn't completely innocent by a long shot on the evidence but we aren't privy to what goes on internally. For my money, he is simply a foil and that is why Vettel treats him as such and gets away with it. However, this is a major public spat, the like of which we have never seen at RBR hitherto. I rather hope it continues. Of course, it can't or the team management will look like a sideshow. Vettel is about as popular as Himmler right now. That doesn't matter either. After all, it's Newey versus the rest - the drivers are irrelevant.

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So much to argue about and me being crap at making short posts doesn't help! I would like so much to a## my pov but at the same time I think that it will be both too long and too irrelevant as many great points have already been arised here!

I will try to be as concise as I can:

1) Ethics of team orders: you cannot ban them, stop living in dreamland. And what's even more, they are only awful if you regard F1 as a mere drivers' sport, which is ignoring half the sport. It is at least 50% a team sport and in such role team orders are not only nattural but a great deal of what makes a good spectacle. The problem is that nor the fans, nor the media, nor the FIa and not even the drivers/teams usually acknowledge this and what's even worse, there is no easy way to tell at which moments it is "right" to consider it a driver's sport and when a teams'.

I, for once, don't feell cheated by the team orders and wouldn't feel cheated if there weren't any team orders either. It's all an integral part of F1. If you don't understand that, better watch badmington, or freestyle figure canoeing.

2) Hamilton/Rosberg: A confuse situation, but the most satisfactory intra team conclussion, it seems. As said before, Hamilton looked dejected after the race, but he didn't seem to feel too bad during the race when he re passed Rosberg a few times. In any case, his apologies sounded more sincere than Vettel's (the only guy ever to overtake another car not deliberately) and Nico seemed to accept it at least at first. At least Merc is handling it in a much more discreet fashion that RBR, that must count for something. That is...until Lauda opens his big mouth...

3) RBR: unsporting? No way. As George said (yes, you are right there but I am sure that is just a coincidence!) team orders are an internal issue with the team. Disobeying team orders might be stupid, self damaging, and not a good PR move, but other than making Newey mad I don't think it taints the sport in any way. What this CLEARLY is a poor display of personality and that takes us to the next point:

4) Vettel, the cucumber. Saying "Get him out of the way!" and then disobeying team orders will hardly make you the most popular guy in the paddock. All top drivers had their supreme arrogance moments and all paid the price. And no, the "leave him alone!" argument does not work with public figures. He is not an arrogant accountant. He is an arrogant F1 driver. You wanted to be famous and recognized. Well, this comes with the package. I might be biased here but I struggle to recall any time in which HAM/SCHU/ALO sounded as arrogant as Vettel this race. This does not mean that he did any mortal sin, merely that he acted like an a##, and that is great talking material for all of us :D

5) Ban Vettel for a race? WHAT???????????? Why??????????????? If a team would ban his best driver and 3x WDC for being an a##, it would be the same if you would cut your own arm because it tipped over a bottle on the the table.

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Hmmm, I am not quite certain if we are arguing quite the same point here, but.................

I am not sure I had really considered the sporting aspect of the overtake when I was referring to the drivers being on an 'equal' footing, although I can see where you are coming from. I guess my opinion infers unsporting behaviour on Seb's part, but it wasn't really the angle I was coming from. I wasn't suggesting that Seb only overtook him when he knew Webber's engine was turned down so he is an evil monster (cue evil laugh), purely that if I see team mates battle, unless it's on as 'equal' a footing as it can be, (notice the internationational ' ' there laugh.png) all things considered, then to me it's no different a spectacle than team orders dictating the finishing order. If that makes any sense?

Ok, regarding the actual battle for postion, I am going on the theory that the initial pass by the pit wall was the bit where Webber was taken by surprise. We may differ on that, but it supports my theory, so I am going with it whistling.gif So at turns 2 and 4, I reckon Webber could have been more aggressive. I don't mean actually physically hitting Seb, but by taking the racing line, which he would have been within his rights to do so being in front and by taking advanatage of Seb's aggressiveness (knowing that rather than concede the corner Seb would have more than likely gone off), he could have made life a whole lot more uncomfortable for Seb.

Regarding the whole turning the engine management back up, presumably during the battle for position, I guess you mean? I have no idea how quick they can change it, I would have thought it would be reasonably quick to change, but it's just a guess. As to whether you would think to change it during 4 corners of a surprise battle, I am not too sure on that one. Would you think to change it after the incident and chase Seb down? Maybe he did and was still not able to catch him, I don't know.

I still maintain that Seb being quicker at that part of the race was not the argument, though. Mark was quicker until the last pit stop. That's when the cut off point for racing was agreed prior to the race, or at least I think it would be and RBR pretty much confirmed that. As a driver you then know that you have to beat your team mate to postion by the last pit stop. Anything after that doesn't matter because there is no race per se as per your pre-race agreement. We have no idea how much quicker Webber could have gone earlier in the race (or indeed Seb) had he not been driving to team orders, as it seems he was, due to the team being unsure of tyre wear. Again, I only have Webber's word for that, but it seems a fairly likely scenario in today's F1 and it's certainly not unheard of. So, as far as I can see, the whole strategy would then be tailored to beating the other teams and beating your team mate by the last pit stop and then hoping that no other team can challenge you. During the race they would have known they had the measure of the Mercs and so for Webber, all he had to do was be in front of Seb by the last pit stop. Or not, in this case..........laugh.png

I probably should have said in my first reply to you that my post about the equal ('equal'?) footing thing was not actually based on anything you typed tongue.png It was based on something Alex said, if memory serves which it may not, but mostly on an article by James Allen. I was just making a general point about whether it was unsporting or not, and putting the argument as I see it.

I think we do disagree on how hard Webber fought and what point he realised he was in a fight. I'm just not that convinced it was an unfair fight because of a team order or because Vettel broke a team order, but I think it was an unfair fight for other reasons - but those other reasons don't matter. I'm not trying to argue that because Vettel was quicker at the end of the race, the disregard of a team order was justified, my argument would be more like: Webber was slower at the end of the race and that was not to do with a team tactic, because any team tactic that you could throw out of the window, you would do so if you wanted to beat your arrogant, disobedient team mate who is suddenly racing you! If Webber is not slower because of a team tactic, I have no issue with his team mate passing him from a sporting POV. It makes good sense to me for faster cars to pass slower cars, provided they follow the FIA's rules!

That isn't an argument that what Vettel did was justified it's just an argument that what he did was not some terrible unsporting act. It can both be not a terrible unsporting act and also something that we don't agree with, but for other non-moral/ethical types of reasons. Personally, I think it's probably fair to say it was stupid and unprofessional. It's obvious the agreement is in place for a good reason and generally in life it's not very good to break agreements or completely disregard your professional duty, but I find it hard to really pin some kind of moral fault on Vettel for doing that, like so many people want to do. Especially when you put it in the context of their history as team mates and Webber doing similar things.

So yeah, I think he was wrong to do it on a professional level but not really a human level. I think it's been blown out of all proportion by the media, in a sort of pathetic and ridiculous way, which obviously isn't a surprise at all. I just hate to even think how they would be if it had been Alonso. Still, it's a shame to see so many people come out with the "I've lost so much respect for Sebestien Vettel" line as if he was up there with Lance Armstrong. Arrogant he may be, but he does not deserve those particular criticisms. It's obvious that for many people it's a completely black and white issue and they don't want to look at the whole picture. No mention can be made of the fact Webber is not at all a supportive team mate, or the value to millions of F1 fans brought about by seeing many corners of side by side action, not to mention the actual paying customers at the track.

Anyway, I imagine that in the future, this incident will just be cited as an example of his ruthlessness rather than some terrible sporting moment like Senna driving Prost off the track at 180mph, which was something both professionally wrong and obviously humanly wrong too. The other good thing is that he clearly doesn't actually care about the reaction, which for now at least is a very healthy attitude, and he's intelligent enough and decent enough to come through it pretty much unscathed. I just hope he doesn't become cold to the British media in the way Schumi was.

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It's pretty easy to make the right decision after you see Alonso's wing come off. laugh.png

True. Same applies to the FIA, Race Control, etc. I think they let Alonso go back to boxes and change the FW. Then it fell off very early after he passed by pit lane entrance. I'd say they would considered showing orange-black? flag to Alonso soon in his 2nd lap.

*Oh, I'd also like to say that had team orders still been "illegal" as per the FIA's regs, would we be holding Vettel up as an example of a driver who disobeyed his team in the interests of true sporting principles? I suspect not but I like the idea of it laugh.png

I don't think FIA regulations have anything to say in an intra team agreement like that. The drivers and the team had an agreement that in normal circumstances is fair with both drivers and good for the team. That's been never considered team orders.

I probably should have said in my first reply to you that my post about the equal ('equal'?) footing thing was not actually based on anything you typed tongue.png It was based on something Alex said, if memory serves which it may not, but mostly on an article by James Allen. I was just making a general point about whether it was unsporting or not, and putting the argument as I see it.

I only mentioned the racing on equal footing because for some people in the forum racing was the all to justify what Vettel did in Malaysia. It was entertaining but racing?

Having said that, the only reason why I didn't like what Vettel did was that he broke an agreement with his teammate. I don't care if he broke any FIA rule or any clause in his contract too, these are not as important as such agreement.

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So much to argue about and me being crap at making short posts doesn't help! I would like so much to a## my pov but at the same time I think that it will be both too long and too irrelevant as many great points have already been arised here!

I will try to be as concise as I can:

1) Ethics of team orders: you cannot ban them, stop living in dreamland. And what's even more, they are only awful if you regard F1 as a mere drivers' sport, which is ignoring half the sport. It is at least 50% a team sport and in such role team orders are not only nattural but a great deal of what makes a good spectacle. The problem is that nor the fans, nor the media, nor the FIa and not even the drivers/teams usually acknowledge this and what's even worse, there is no easy way to tell at which moments it is "right" to consider it a driver's sport and when a teams'.

I, for once, don't feell cheated by the team orders and wouldn't feel cheated if there weren't any team orders either. It's all an integral part of F1. If you don't understand that, better watch badmington, or freestyle figure canoeing.

2) Hamilton/Rosberg: A confuse situation, but the most satisfactory intra team conclussion, it seems. As said before, Hamilton looked dejected after the race, but he didn't seem to feel too bad during the race when he re passed Rosberg a few times. In any case, his apologies sounded more sincere than Vettel's (the only guy ever to overtake another car not deliberately) and Nico seemed to accept it at least at first. At least Merc is handling it in a much more discreet fashion that RBR, that must count for something. That is...until Lauda opens his big mouth...

3) RBR: unsporting? No way. As George said (yes, you are right there but I am sure that is just a coincidence!) team orders are an internal issue with the team. Disobeying team orders might be stupid, self damaging, and not a good PR move, but other than making Newey mad I don't think it taints the sport in any way. What this CLEARLY is a poor display of personality and that takes us to the next point:

4) Vettel, the cucumber. Saying "Get him out of the way!" and then disobeying team orders will hardly make you the most popular guy in the paddock. All top drivers had their supreme arrogance moments and all paid the price. And no, the "leave him alone!" argument does not work with public figures. He is not an arrogant accountant. He is an arrogant F1 driver. You wanted to be famous and recognized. Well, this comes with the package. I might be biased here but I struggle to recall any time in which HAM/SCHU/ALO sounded as arrogant as Vettel this race. This does not mean that he did any mortal sin, merely that he acted like an a##, and that is great talking material for all of us biggrin.png

5) Ban Vettel for a race? WHAT???????????? Why??????????????? If a team would ban his best driver and 3x WDC for being an a##, it would be the same if you would cut your own arm because it tipped over a bottle on the the table.

lol...lovely stuff!

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Regarding Hamilton's fuel issue I think that one factor was not considered in the reasoning. It wasn't a matter of Lewis pushing his car too much but a case of Merc gambling that wet conditions would continue for much longer than they actually did. That would put Lewis at an advantage in the wet because it effectively means that his car would probably weigh in the region of 20kg lighter in the opening rainy stint, making it marginally easier to handle, faster and kinder to its inters, while his rivals plodded around with the full 150kg of fuel on top of their 642kg cars.

This is obvious from the fact that Merc split their strategy with Nico running the necessary amount of fuel for an almost full dry race. The other points about the team orders have been covered pretty well, but I still think it's just silly for Lewis to have re-passed Nico. If he really was having to turn down the engine to save fuel then spending that limited, precious allocation on merely a chance (at that point he didn't know for certain that he would pass Nico sucessfully) to get ahead does not compute well in my mind. The picture there wasn't as cut-and-dry as we were all led to believe (the Merc duo and team being better at PR).

Of course this is assuming my theory of underfuelling him is correct.

In any case would it not be more advantageous for Nico to overtake Lewis and be told to keep within a delta lap time so that Lewis could limp back in the drag-reducing slipstream wake behind Nico and thus save fuel and effectively increasing both their paces at the same time? Especially if the Aussie grit got aggressive and put both bulls in a compromising position.

A lot of intrigue generated, this race. Somehow we got to see a glimpse of the dark side in having 2 car teams and team orders. Amazing also that for the first time Ferrari are innocent parties in the matter.

I quote you what my brother in Finland had to say after watching the race " Great race, I like the fact that everybody lost one way or another"

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In the end, this RBR debacle is not about a ruthless driver rather a weak manager. If Horner doesn't deal with Vettel in the the most severe terms, then I believe his position is untenable.

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Regarding Hamilton's fuel issue I think that one factor was not considered in the reasoning. It wasn't a matter of Lewis pushing his car too much but a case of Merc gambling that wet conditions would continue for much longer than they actually did. That would put Lewis at an advantage in the wet because it effectively means that his car would probably weigh in the region of 20kg lighter in the opening rainy stint, making it marginally easier to handle, faster and kinder to its inters, while his rivals plodded around with the full 150kg of fuel on top of their 642kg cars.

This is obvious from the fact that Merc split their strategy with Nico running the necessary amount of fuel for an almost full dry race. The other points about the team orders have been covered pretty well, but I still think it's just silly for Lewis to have re-passed Nico. If he really was having to turn down the engine to save fuel then spending that limited, precious allocation on merely a chance (at that point he didn't know for certain that he would pass Nico sucessfully) to get ahead does not compute well in my mind. The picture there wasn't as cut-and-dry as we were all led to believe (the Merc duo and team being better at PR).

Of course this is assuming my theory of underfuelling him is correct.

In any case would it not be more advantageous for Nico to overtake Lewis and be told to keep within a delta lap time so that Lewis could limp back in the drag-reducing slipstream wake behind Nico and thus save fuel and effectively increasing both their paces at the same time? Especially if the Aussie grit got aggressive and put both bulls in a compromising position.

A lot of intrigue generated, this race. Somehow we got to see a glimpse of the dark side in having 2 car teams and team orders. Amazing also that for the first time Ferrari are innocent parties in the matter.

I quote you what my brother in Finland had to say after watching the race " Great race, I like the fact that everybody lost one way or another"

Lovely description of the race by your brother, there! :D

Re HAM/ROS: Two things. Hamiliton ahead because of the points tally (you didn't arise that point but was mentioned elsewhere) makes no sense. Keeping the number one ahead makes sense if you are actually fighting for the championship or the difference between drivers is too big. In Mercs case the difference has not yet been established and they should be aiming for poodiums or some wins before dreaming about a WCC/WDC.

That said, it would have been better to let ROS through, it would have avoided the crisis, and none of the drivers would have gained/lost too much.

Now for the fueling issue: I doesn't hold too much. If any or both cars were underfueled and had to save fuel, why let them overtake each other (more than once) the previous laps? And, in any case, a simple move aside from Hamilton to let Rosberg through would not have costed them any extra fuel except for the negligible. If fuel was so low as to prevent this they shouldn't even have lapped the backmarkers, as that would probably costed them more fuel!

Nah, I think it was a bad decision and your brother is right :D

In the end, this RBR debacle is not about a ruthless driver rather a weak manager. If Horner doesn't deal with Vettel in the the most severe terms, then I believe his position is untenable.

In this I agree. It is telling that the guy that went to scold Vettel first was Newey and not Horner. They have some serious damage limitation to do unless they want to look like Ferrari, with the difference that when you hear Ferrari you might think about shady moves and cheating, but also about the most exclusive sports cars in the world. WIth RBR you think about cheating, shady moves and...a fizz drink...

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In this I agree. It is telling that the guy that went to scold Vettel first was Newey and not Horner. They have some serious damage limitation to do unless they want to look like Ferrari, with the difference that when you hear Ferrari you might think about shady moves and cheating, but also about the most exclusive sports cars in the world. WIth RBR you think about cheating, shady moves and...a fizz drink...

From yesterday the RBR saga has been splashed over the world on the sport pages....There is no such thing as bad publicity...Dietrich must be smiling!!!

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I probably should have said in my first reply to you that my post about the equal ('equal'?) footing thing was not actually based on anything you typed tongue.png It was based on something Alex said, if memory serves which it may not, but mostly on an article by James Allen. I was just making a general point about whether it was unsporting or not, and putting the argument as I see it.

Well I thought that it might be in reference to somebody else, but you know I like to cause trouble from time to time laugh.png

I think we do disagree on how hard Webber fought and what point he realised he was in a fight. I'm just not that convinced it was an unfair fight because of a team order or because Vettel broke a team order, but I think it was an unfair fight for other reasons - but those other reasons don't matter. I'm not trying to argue that because Vettel was quicker at the end of the race, the disregard of a team order was justified, my argument would be more like: Webber was slower at the end of the race and that was not to do with a team tactic, because any team tactic that you could throw out of the window, you would do so if you wanted to beat your arrogant, disobedient team mate who is suddenly racing you! If Webber is not slower because of a team tactic, I have no issue with his team mate passing him from a sporting POV. It makes good sense to me for faster cars to pass slower cars, provided they follow the FIA's rules!

I am not really too sure if we are really disagreeing on this or not, to be honest. I think the difference in opinion here is down to timing, you're perspective is from a complete race point of view, my perspective is that I think the race was effectively over after the last pit stop. I agree that Webber was slower in the last stint, otherwise, as you say, he would have speeded up and beaten his 'arrogant disobedient team mate'. I generally don't have too much of a problem with either situation, team mates can battle, or the teams can order them to stay put, I accept that this is F1, even if I don't always agree with the decision.

That isn't an argument that what Vettel did was justified it's just an argument that what he did was not some terrible unsporting act. It can both be not a terrible unsporting act and also something that we don't agree with, but for other non-moral/ethical types of reasons. Personally, I think it's probably fair to say it was stupid and unprofessional. It's obvious the agreement is in place for a good reason and generally in life it's not very good to break agreements or completely disregard your professional duty, but I find it hard to really pin some kind of moral fault on Vettel for doing that, like so many people want to do. Especially when you put it in the context of their history as team mates and Webber doing similar things.

So yeah, I think he was wrong to do it on a professional level but not really a human level. I think it's been blown out of all proportion by the media, in a sort of pathetic and ridiculous way, which obviously isn't a surprise at all. I just hate to even think how they would be if it had been Alonso. Still, it's a shame to see so many people come out with the "I've lost so much respect for Sebestien Vettel" line as if he was up there with Lance Armstrong. Arrogant he may be, but he does not deserve those particular criticisms. It's obvious that for many people it's a completely black and white issue and they don't want to look at the whole picture. No mention can be made of the fact Webber is not at all a supportive team mate, or the value to millions of F1 fans brought about by seeing many corners of side by side action, not to mention the actual paying customers at the track.

I don't think it's terrible act, it's not the end of the world as we know it, but I do think it is a tad unsporting though for the same reasons Aley says in his post - he broke an agreement with his team mate. Past incursions between them are irrelevant. If Seb is still harbouring a grudge, then he should have said in the meetings before the race that he wasn't going to comply if he was told to stay behind Webber.

I guess I must see the world slightly differently with regards to personalities as Vettel never comes across as arrogant to me, well, normally, anyway. His radio message to move Webber out of the way was pretty disdainful, although I put that down to frustration more than anything else, but generally, I quite like the guy. I can't say I have lost any respect for him as I am not sure he ever actually gained any respect for anything other than what he does in the car and that has not changed.

Anyway, I imagine that in the future, this incident will just be cited as an example of his ruthlessness rather than some terrible sporting moment like Senna driving Prost off the track at 180mph, which was something both professionally wrong and obviously humanly wrong too. The other good thing is that he clearly doesn't actually care about the reaction, which for now at least is a very healthy attitude, and he's intelligent enough and decent enough to come through it pretty much unscathed. I just hope he doesn't become cold to the British media in the way Schumi was.

Yep, I am sure it will soon be forgotten. It was a bad judgement call, I guess.

Edited by pabloh20

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...

I don't think FIA regulations have anything to say in an intra team agreement like that. The drivers and the team had an agreement that in normal circumstances is fair with both drivers and good for the team. That's been never considered team orders.

No, I agree, that's my point! I would consider breaching many FIA rules, for example, overtaking outside of the bounds of the track, to be more unsporting than breaking most intra team rules.

I only mentioned the racing on equal footing because for some people in the forum racing was the all to justify what Vettel did in Malaysia. It was entertaining but racing?

It's true that racing is not the "be all and end all". But it sure looked like every other example of racing I've ever seen. What I would say is you don't have to believe it wasn't fair racing to think it was a bad thing for Vettel to have done.

Like I say, if Webber had to nurse his car then it's a shame for him that Vettel's attack came at a bad time. But Vettel winning a battle doesn't make it unfair, just because there was an agreement in place. Once you are racing, you are racing. That doesn't make it "unfair" racing in the same way any other example of a faster car passing a slower car is "unfair" racing, simply because one car is faster than another. Basically, I see enough separation between the initial agreement and the actual battle they ended up having.

Let me point out that I would absolutely support the unsporting criticisms IF Vettel passed Webber on the last corner, or perhaps even at the beginning of the last lap. This was not the case. Webber had opportunity to respond, that's where the issue of fairness applies (see: Villeneuve and Pironi); the fact he could not respond is not an issue of fairness.

The same argument would also say that if Rosberg had passed Hamilton, who was clearly slow because of fuel, that would not have been "unfair" of Rosberg from a sporting POV, to pass a slower car, simply because his team told him not to do it. In that case, there is even a good argument it would have been better from a sporting ethics pov (why should Rosberg suffer because Hamilton does?).

That doesn't mean it isn't wrong for other reasons, but just as "racing" isn't the only factor in deciding whether something was good or bad, neither is "fairness". Just because I think it was fair doesn't mean I am limited to thinking it was right, not synonymous concepts here.

Having said that, the only reason why I didn't like what Vettel did was that he broke an agreement with his teammate. I don't care if he broke any FIA rule or any clause in his contract too, these are not as important as such agreement.

I don't like that he broke an agreement either, though I think it was more of a general team policy rather than a specific agreement between team mates, for example like Prost and Senna had in Estoril (?) 1988 or Coulthard and Hakkinen had some times. Obviously, you have to recognise Webebr has breached similar agreements and in arguably worse ways, as in Brazil last year. But that doesn't matter; Vettel obviously knew the policy and disregarded a direct order. Nobody could argue those are good things to do. My issue is more about thinking in what way they are bad and comparing them to other things drivers have done.

I'd say I probably think that following FIA rules is more important from a sporting POV than following certain intra team rules. Intra team rules, or at least agreements between team mates, are more likely to be about compromises between "competitive animals", such as the car who leads after the first corner shall win the race, or the car who leads gets the first choice of when to pit, etc. These can be disciplined by teams just as they can be created by teams.

FIA rules, on the other hand, prevent outright cheating such as using illegal components, dangerous blocking moves or overtaking outside of the track. I guess if you were really reaching here, you could say that the natural conclusion of this argument is that anybody who thinks that what Vettel did was truly unsporting, must also want the FIA to create a regulation dealing with precisely this sort of transgression as they have rules dealing with every other unsporting act. Funnily enough, the opposite is true, the FIA used to have a rule saying team orders were illegal, presumably because they were ultimately unsporting because it was unfair for faster drivers to be told to hold station (like Vettel or Rosberg) or slower drivers to be moved out of the way (like Barrichello or many other examples).

That such a rule was unworkable and unrealistic in a team sport does not, as far as I see it, actually defeat the principle that team orders are inherently more unsporting than not having team orders. This explains why, if Vettel had stayed behind Webber as instructed, it's hard to imagine anybody would now be talking about the sportsmanship of Vettel's act in not attacking Webber in the last stint; they would be discussing whether it was fair of Red Bull from a sporting POV to tell him to hold station. Don't believe that? Look at what Rosberg did and look at how people are questioning whether it was fair of Mercedes; rather than crediting Rosberg with being some great sportsman. If Vettel had held station he would have been better off in lots of ways, he would have been a team player (whatever that means), there's an argument it would have been more logical for his future championship, would certainly be more professional. Just not more ethical.

Like I say, that doesn't excuse anything, is just a way of putting it into context, a context which many people in the media either fail to see or deliberately don't recognise as it makes the story juicier.

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Oh no, there's another reply! Thankfully I think we mostly agree here Paul except on the different perceptions of the last stint, which is probably quite an important difference but not one worth arguing about too much if we agree on everything else.

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I am not really too sure if we are really disagreeing on this or not, to be honest. I think the difference in opinion here is down to timing, you're perspective is from a complete race point of view, my perspective is that I think the race was effectively over after the last pit stop. I agree that Webber was slower in the last stint, otherwise, as you say, he would have speeded up and beaten his 'arrogant disobedient team mate'. I generally don't have too much of a problem with either situation, team mates can battle, or the teams can order them to stay put, I accept that this is F1, even if I don't always agree with the decision.

I'm not too sure about that. If Webber had done that then he would have turned into an 'arrogant disobedient team mate' so maybe there was more speed in Webber although maybe not enough to regain P1. Webber lost roughly 5 seconds in his inlap vs. Vettel's outlap so we should know when Red Bull told Webber to detune his engine. Maybe Webber would have been able to manage the gap if he had ignored his race engineer "MULTI 21" message on the radio like Vettel did.

I don't think it's terrible act, it's not the end of the world as we know it, but I do think it is a tad unsporting though for the same reasons Aley says in his post - he broke an agreement with his team mate. Past incursions between them are irrelevant. If Seb is still harbouring a grudge, then he should have said in the meetings before the race that he wasn't going to comply if he was told to stay behind Webber.

That was exactly my point.

No, I agree, that's my point! I would consider breaching many FIA rules, for example, overtaking outside of the bounds of the track, to be more unsporting than breaking most intra team rules.

I don't think we should compare different rules to see what's more unsporting. If you overtake outside the bounds of the track you know the FIA will deal with it if you get caught. Vettel broke an intra team agreement and he knew like the rest of the world that the team won't do anything about it.

Like I say, that doesn't excuse anything, is just a way of putting it into context, a context which many people in the media either fail to see or deliberately don't recognise as it makes the story juicier.

At the end of the day Vettel might need these 7 points he won in Malysia to win the Championship... Or Webber. If, for whatever reason, Webber lost the championship by less than 7 points it wouldn't make it more unethical, nor more unsporting but his action would involve more serious collateral damage. In the same way, If Vettel win the Championship by less than 7 points, which is a more likely scenario, it wouldn't make it more ethical but his action would be considered the right choice. My POV is we can only consider what he did in Malaysia without so many implications, past actions, future, etc.

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I'm not too sure about that. If Webber had done that then he would have turned into an 'arrogant disobedient team mate' so maybe there was more speed in Webber although maybe not enough to regain P1. Webber lost roughly 5 seconds in his inlap vs. Vettel's outlap so we should know when Red Bull told Webber to detune his engine. Maybe Webber would have been able to manage the gap if he had ignored his race engineer "MULTI 21" message on the radio like Vettel did..

"But having done all of that, at the final stop something very unusual happened; having been given the stop preference throughout the race, coming in a lap earlier than Vettel for the second and third stops, Webber was then disadvantaged at the final stop. He was brought in a lap later than his team-mate who pitted on Lap 42. Prior to this Webber had enjoyed a 4.2 second lead. However after exiting the pits on new hard tyres on lap 43 he found that Vettel was now 0.5s behind him on the faster new mediums. If Webber had stopped first he would have increased his lead.

So by stopping Vettel first, the team artificially set up the circumstance for what then happened, with Vettel choosing to attack and pass. The money in F1 is all in the constructors’ points, not the drivers’ points, so with 43 points for a 1-2, there was no reason for the team to want any risks to be taken by letting them race; plus racing each other, as they did, damages the tyres.Despite the fact that the team had every reason to want the drivers to hold station after the final stops – and instructed them to do so – the circumstances led Vettel to see an opportunity, which had been created by this strategic decision. He wanted to redress the earlier strategic mistake, which had cost him the lead at the first stop. The rest is history."

from JamesallenonF1

A reader post this reply under the previous report...

"Just before the pit stops both Hamilton and Rosburg were faster in the 1st and 3rd sectors. Hamilton pitted the lap before Vettel and so Redbull had to pit Vettel first to counter act the undercut from Mercedes, Hamilton put in the fastest second and third sector of the race on his out lap which means if Webber had of pitted first Vettel would have lost track position . Usually Redbull have always given the leading driver the first option of a pit stop (this was the case in the earlier stages of the race) but in this case Webber was 6 seconds down the road from the Mercedes so the obvious choice was to pit Vettel first.

Vettel on his in and out lap was sensational while Webber had to endure a lap on some very worn tyres. As a result Vettel was within half a second of Webber as Webber exited the pits and then the fight was on."

Edited by BradSpeedMan

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That makes sense. I'm not questioning Red Bull decision. Probably was the right thing to do from an F1 team perspective. I don't think Webber feels he's been cheated by Red Bull on that but he didn't expect the outcome of the race. If I'm honest the thing that disappointed me from Vettel was his silly apology.

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Oh no, there's another reply! Thankfully I think we mostly agree here Paul except on the different perceptions of the last stint, which is probably quite an important difference but not one worth arguing about too much if we agree on everything else.

I will allow you to disagree with me on this occasion :whistling:

That's fine, it would be boring if we all thought the same all the time and I don't think it's that often that you and I have wildly differing opinions, well with reards to F1 anyway :lol:

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I'm not too sure about that. If Webber had done that then he would have turned into an 'arrogant disobedient team mate' so maybe there was more speed in Webber although maybe not enough to regain P1. Webber lost roughly 5 seconds in his inlap vs. Vettel's outlap so we should know when Red Bull told Webber to detune his engine. Maybe Webber would have been able to manage the gap if he had ignored his race engineer "MULTI 21" message on the radio like Vettel did.

I don't know if you read the previous posts of both George and myself, but just to clarify, the 'arrogant disobedient team mate' reference was both George and myself using the general media branding of Seb, it's not our opinion of him.

It's possible Webber may have had more speed in him, however I do think he would have been closer to Seb if he did have more speed. I suppose it is largely irrelevant as we both agree that whatever speed he did have, it was not enough to take P1.

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And what's with the "MULTI 21" thing? Don't they know team orders are legal now? Why all the pseudo secrecy?

Those are the kind of signs that won't help them. And before somebody tell me about Ferrari and McLaren and THEIR secrecy let me tell you that the problem I am talking about is about image, and in that sense Ferrari is and always will be the bad guy but they are used to that role. RBR is as bad but with a hollier-than-thou attitude. That's what gets on most people's nerves.

If Ferrari is a paedophile, RBR is a paedophile priest.

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That makes sense. I'm not questioning Red Bull decision. Probably was the right thing to do from an F1 team perspective. I don't think Webber feels he's been cheated by Red Bull on that but he didn't expect the outcome of the race. If I'm honest the thing that disappointed me from Vettel was his silly apology.

True, he only did it to placate the media...

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That makes sense. I'm not questioning Red Bull decision. Probably was the right thing to do from an F1 team perspective. I don't think Webber feels he's been cheated by Red Bull on that but he didn't expect the outcome of the race. If I'm honest the thing that disappointed me from Vettel was his silly apology.

I think people should apologise when they have done something wrong. However in this case, I think Seb should have been a bit more diplomatic and said things will be discussed with the team in private. He shouldn't have apologized I don't feel. Better to come out and say it was some form of payback for Webber's assistance in Silverstone and Brazil, and now the ledger was squared and the matter closed.

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